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I'm Beginning To See The Light

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Album Review

As one of the prime movers behind the "new acoustic" movement that began gathering speed in the mid-'70s, David Grisman helped usher in a new era of acoustic jazz. With other renegade players like Tony Rice, Richard Greene and Sam Bush, he took an instrument generally associated with bluegrass music (in his case, the mandolin) and turned it to more adventurous uses, often combining the instrumentation and textures of bluegrass with the advanced harmonic structures and rhythms of jazz. He's never completely turned his back on bluegrass, but his primary focus has been on jazz and jazz-derived styles for some time. I'm Beginning to See the Light is a collection of standards recorded in collaboration with guitarist Martin Taylor, bassist Jim Kerwin and drummer George Marsh. The program is pretty predictable, including "Autumn Leaves," "Cheek to Cheek," and "Makin' Whoopee." But the mandolin gives the quartet an unusual texture, and Taylor's playing is always fun to listen to. There's a pervasive gentleness to the group's sound that sometimes borders on soporific, but every time you stir yourself to listen closely, you'll be rewarded. Recommended.

I'm Beginning To See The Light, Martin Taylor, David Grisman Jazz Quartet
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